Tuesday, February 11, 2020

Tragic In So Many Ways

This morning on my Facebook feed a news story popped up about a robbery and outcome in Camdenton MO. This is the area where we own a lake home so I try to stay connected to the local news and events online.

For the last several days it has been news about a man robbed the pharmacy at the grocery store we patronize when at the lake. In summary from the news reports a man entered the grocery store, jumped the counter in the pharmacy, brandished a gun and stole several hundred pills containing opioids. No one was hurt and no shots were fired. There were clear pictures of this individual and his pickup truck used in the robbery.

This morning it has been reported the individual was "captured". Law enforcement did the job they are suppose to do. They found out who the suspect was and due to the danger involved surrounded the home with multiple officers. The suspect was ask to surrender and instead he shot himself in the head. He was transported to the local hospital and is reported in serious condition.

As you can probably guess I am disturbed by this story especially since I haven't posted on this blog since July 6, 2019 and this story spurred me to write.

On my Facebook feed about this story there are so many comments from people stating: "good", "got what he deserved", "saved us money from having to jail him". It is disgusting what I have been reading.

I choose to respond to the comments with this: From what I read an assumption of mine is that this person suffered from addiction. Addiction is a disease. What he did was wrong but what he did is also a symptom of the disease. People suffering from addiction need compassion and resources. An act like holding up a pharmacy to get pills is an act of desperation by a person suffering from his addiction. Harsh words and feelings do nothing to improve the situation for anyone or any loved one suffering the effects of this disease. Of course, I too am now receiving all the hate from people about my comment.

Addiction is a polarizing disease. I feel a hopelessness that this young man could only see robbery and shooting himself as a solution to his disease. Who knows what his circumstances were to get to this point but I know there are options. Most times options someone addicted cannot see. 

Until we all see the actions of this man are symptoms of the disease outcomes like this will continue.